Thursday, June 01, 2006

More usage whingeing

I don't care what consenting adults say or write in the privacy of their own homes. I really don't. But people who make their living writing or talking for public consumption have a duty to the rest of us and to their employers, especially if they are TV or radio 'stars' making squillions of dollars, to be or to become fully literate. Then they would not make, as so many of them currently do, the following errors quite so often. Ahem:

Hypocrisy is not spelled 'hypocracy'.

Publicly is not spelled 'publically'.

Accidentally is not spelled 'accidently'. (There's a rule emerging here. The word 'accidental' exists, but the word 'publical' does not, hence the difference.)

Heterosexual is not spelled either 'hetrosexual' or 'hetrasexual'.

Et cetera (which is Latin) is not pronounced 'ex-etra', much less 'ix-etra'.

Co-operate is not pronounced 'coo-woperate'.

Co-incidence is not pronounced 'coo-wincidence'.

Koala is not pronounced 'coo-wahla'.

Thank you.


Kate said...

I have a small but shameful confession to make: I often misspell publicly as publically. I usually realise it's wrong fairly quickly, but it's one of those reflexive spelling mistakes I just seem to make over and over again.

ThirdCat said...

I'm not saying nothing.

Pavlov's Cat said...

3C is correct -- setting oneself up as an expert in these matters is just begging for trouble. But sometimes ah jest cain't he'p mahself.

Ampersand Duck said...

You go, girl.

I live with someone like you. I know the pain.

Blue said...

My 2 pet hates are:

Torlet - toilet

Orientated - oriented.

Anonymous said...

Nuffink the matter here.

Youse in Souf 'Straylya just ol' fashioned.

You just wait when its all on mobile fone.

Den no spelin erers.

- barista

Zoe said...

Once I went out with a man who said "pacifically" instead of specifically.

Yes, it was very brief.

Lucy Tartan said...

when the leader of the free world persists in "nukyular", and oh my lord I believe I heard Howard aping him in this just the other day, I can't condemn too many of the infractions of lesser mortals.

Lucy Tartan said...

Kate - I always misspell 'necessary' (double c), perhaps because of this I use the word far more than is at all necessary.

Anonymous said...

Ahem. My confession.

I usually spell it "whinging".


elsewhere said...

I think you should share some of this with the writers of _Kath and Kim_.

but what about the inability to change one's computer system at work from American to Australian English? Has anyone else encountered this -- 'journaling' for 'journalling', etc. it's playing with my mind.

The Daddy said...

It was turnbull, surprisingly, who said nukular the other day.

Isn't co-operate now legit sans hyphen, as in cooperate?

Pavlov's Cat said...

Torlet doesn't bother me -- I live in SA where people have a lot of trouble with L generally; nobody can pronounce a terminal L ('Jiw is reaw iw', as a bemused NSW friend once put it, to which I maturely replied 'Skewl, pewl, fewl and Newcassle so nyerdy nyer').

I think when it's slang you're allowed to make up the spelling. I write 'whingeing' because to my eyes 'whinging' looks as if it should rhyme with 'singing'.

Yes, I saw Turnbull. I was shocked. Maybe he was trying so hard not to say it that he said it -- Freud rules.

Cooperate without hyphen, yes, absolutely, but I think that's what the problem is -- it's still pronounced as in 'co' and 'operate', but people see two o's together and think they should pronounce it 'oo'.

E -- I think the Kath and Kim people are way ahead of me.

I once knew the whole phonetic alphabet -- not the radio one, the little symbols denoting sounds that can be found in dictionaries. I hate it when I forget things I used to know.

zoot said...

For years my pet peeve has been "haitch". I fear it is becoming standard usage.

tigtog said...

An otherwise brilliant American blogger continually writes "hoards" when she means "hordes". It makes me grind my teeth.

JahTeh said...

I wish I hadn't come here, I'm now going to proof-read my last blog post. I hate American English as in fetus because now I can't remember where the 'o' goes.

hc said...

I dislike 'specifically' becoming 'pacifically' - a colleague has been saying this for 20 years.

A former teacher of mine told me that he reached age 55 without realising that 'melancholy' is not pronounced 'mellan-chollee'.

Galaxy said...

hc, do you mean 'chollee' as in 'cheese'? And not 'kollee' as in 'cauliflower'? Mmmm cauliflower cheese....

I recently spelt publicly, 'publically', I thought it didn't look right, but I still had to check in the dictionary.

Then there was the time I spoke to an international operator who insisted on saying 'haitch', I commented to the person next to me that she should be saying 'aitch', when said operator stopped talking to the other operator in America to ask me ('caller')what I said, I demurred from answering. Australian operator continued to spell to American operator, spitting out 'haitch' with such venom that I fairly shrivelled on the spot. That's what I got for being all passive aggressively superior-like, but I share zoot's pain. Still I grew up with having an Uncle 'Aitch', because he hates his name, 'Henry'.

Pavlov's Cat said...

For years I often heard the theory that 'haitch' was ramapant among former pupils at Catholic schools who'd been very deliberately taught to say Haitch by Irish nuns, but I scorned this as blind anti-Catholic prejudice until a friend who'd been there told me that, in her case at least, it was true. Now I don't know what to think, except that it makes me grind my teeth like Tigtog's whenever I hear it on radio or TV. Again let me stress: it only bothers me when it's public-sphere usage, where people have a professional responsibility to try to get this sort of stuff right.

comicstriphero said...

ix-nay on the ix-cetera, eh?

cristy said...

I have decided that I must learn to spell correctly after realising how much pain my poor spelling can cause others.

However, it is not easy for those of us who were never taught and have no natural talent for it. Poor spelling never looks odd to me until Word puts a little red line underneath the word in question.

Somehow I still get annoyed with others who mispronounce words. I, of all people, should have more sympathy.